Roschier confirms Swedish focus as new chairman takes over the reins

Roschier has a new-look leadership after its long-serving chairman stepped down to take a back seat at the firm.

Tomas Lindholm

Tomas Lindholm

The Nordic powerhouse, which has offices in ­Helsinki and Stockholm, will see Axel Calissendorff take over as chairman from Tomas ­Lindholm.

Lindholm will stay on as chairman of the board and senior partner until 30 November before leaving to join his wife’s firm Wallgren-Lindholm as a partner.

Recently elected Ulf-Henrik Kull will continue as the firm’s managing partner.

“The fact that Axel is Swedish and Ulf-Henrik is Finnish means we’ll have a dual-nationality leadership,” said Lindholm. “Stockholm is where we see future growth, so it’s logical that we see Swedish partners in ­senior management.”

Lindholm has been at the firm for more than 25 years, which included six years as managing partner.

Roschier, which has 30 partners and 160 lawyers spread across its two offices, opened in Stockholm in 2005. That office has grown rapidly to house 50 lawyers, including 10 partners.

Calissendorff, who ­spearheaded the Swedish expansion, said he planned to increase the firm’s ­headcount in Sweden to between 80 and 100 lawyers in the next five years.

Last week the firm announced the hire of Magnus Wallander, former head of the employment pension group and ex-managing partner at Mannheimer Swartling.

“The plan is to become a stronger Northern ­European player,” said ­Calissendorff. “We’ll continue the maintenance of the leadership position we have in Helsinki at the same time and also further develop our non-exclusive relationships with Nordic firms.”

Roschier has a pan-Baltic alliance with Raidla Lejins & Norcous, dubbed RoschierRaidla, that gives the firm access to around 100 lawyers in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

“We’ve recognised that the strongest players have lawyers in more than one country,” said Calissendorff. “What we’ve done in Sweden is unusual because in just four years we’ve set up a leading firm.”

The Stockholm office brings in around 35 per cent of the firm’s revenue. Roschier posted a turnover of e51m (£44.77m) for 2008-09, down 4 per cent on the previous year.

Over the same period the firm’s Helsinki office ­reported a decrease of 14 per cent, while the new ­Stockholm office posted a 30 per cent increase.

“We had an ambitious plan when we opened in Sweden –  going halfway was never an option. And if we were successful it was inevitable that the gravity of the firm would move to
the larger jurisdiction,” explained Lindholm. ­”Sweden’s been successful thanks to Axel’s capabilities as a lawyer and a leader.”

Calissendorff was quick to return the compliments to his colleague.

“[Lindholm] is a brilliant leader,” Calissendorff ­stated. “The excellent achievements of the firm over the years are due to him. He’s one of the great legal figures of all time in this region and well-known internationally.

We’ll continue to cooperate with him and wish him all the best.”